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And 2018 has come to an end. Most crypto experts are pretty hesitant to come up with bullish price predictions after having gotten their calls gone horrendously wrong. Some of their predictions, however, turned out to be true. The most significant of these was the rise of stablecoins. While 2018 is slated to go down as the year when ICOs hit rock bottom, and markets went south, dollar-pegged stablecoins stole the show. Stablecoins were a recurring theme this year.


However, whether or not they will continue dominating the cryptosphere in 2019 is open to everyone’s speculation. Its success also depends on the performance of traditional crypto assets. Stablecoins will stay relevant in 2019 too if the current market conditions persist. The return of more promising business conditions may, however, force stablecoins to move into oblivion. So, here are some of the trends that might find their way into the crypto market in 2019, and amaze you, just as equally as the stablecoins did in 2018.


1. The rise of new privacy protocols:

The past few years have divested the cryptocurrency users from much of the anonymity that they once enjoyed. The encroaching blockchain surveillance has not gone down well with many crypto users who felt their privacy was being violated. However, the fight for confidentiality has also begun. Therefore, it hardly comes off as a surprise that 2019 is slated to become the most private year in the cryptocurrency realm. However, it will require more than one privacy protocol to reestablish the status quo. Thus, a series of privacy-oriented tools are expected to come up in 2019.


There are chances that Bitcoin Core may obtain Schnorr signatures. If this happens, the entrance to privacy tech, notably Coinoin, could also open in the near future. However, before that happens, many other pro-privacy protocols and apps could hog the limelight. The Aztec contract could give Ethereum its much-needed tool for private transactions. Zkdai has the potential to turn stablecoins private too. While Loki and Dust are other pro-privacy plans that will stay in the news, new privacy coins like Resistance can also be expected to find many takers.


2. STOs might substitute ICOs:  

The year 2018 was a disaster for ICOs. It is highly unlikely that the model for the crowdfunded token will rise again. A surge in compliance and legal costs, which currently average $1 million, has successfully stalled a large number of ICOs. This paves the way for security token offerings (STO) to become the ideal model for a majority of crypto-based schemes. Thus, it is not surprising that projects are increasingly trying to launch their STOs or restructure their ICOs as STOs. Due to limited fundraising options in the U.S. STOs are likely to be launched in areas like Gibraltar and Malta, where regulatory structures have already been formulated.


3. Bolstering of decentralized credit networks:


The year 2018 saw decentralized credit networks making huge strides concerning infrastructure development. 2019 will see them scaling up beginning to serve the kind of users for whom it was envisioned. Thus, more global citizens who are outside the ambit of the current financial system are likely to use these credit networks.


These credit networks will be boosted by the growth of projects like Nexo, GEO Protocol, Maker DAO, and Dharma Protocol. Maker’s system of multi-asset over-collateralization has proved its efficacy through the extreme market volatility in 2018. Hence, it will be emulated in 2019 too. While 2018 focused primarily on ETH, in 2019 Maker will allow ERC20s, BTC, and other crypto & non-crypto assets also.


Author: Sandeep Kumar Mishra